“We want to win a Test match in India which is our main aim during this two Test match series and so far Sri Lanka has not won a Test match in India and we are really focussed on that”, said Sri Lankan Test skipper Dimuth Karunartatne in an interview with Daily News.
The two Test match series will commence on March 4 at Mohali while second Test will be played at Bengaluru from March 12 which will be a day night Test played with a pink ball.”We always have targets in International cricket. Both Indian Test matches are part of the Test Championship and we are also in a good position to enter the Test championship final and this is a good opportunity for that added Karunaratne who is in top form during this long format game. Actually we started with two back to back wins against West Indies last year to reach top of the Test championship points table and we want to continue our performance in Test cricket by winning Test match against India in India which is always difficult target. But as a team we are very confident of doing that and ready put up a good challenge against India said Karunaratne. The India team led by Rohit Sharma is packed with seniors and new players also they have home advantage.
“We also got good preparation before this test series during this hard period. Especially last three days in Sri Lanka we did training to focus on day night Test match. Last day/ night Test against Australia we couldn’t play very well but previous two day/ night Test matches we played really well and hope to play better with pick ball this time at Bengaluru.
“As a skipper I am very satisfied with this selected test squad for Indian series . The experienced players like Angelo Matthews, Lahiru Thrimanne, Dhananjaya de Silva, Suranga Lakmal are included with talented youngsters and well balanced team for us. Actually Thirimanne, Dhanajayade Silva, Charith Asalanka, Patthum Nissanka, Niroshan Dickwella are in good form and they have to fight for places to enter final eleven and that is good for us. Karunaratne the regular opener of the Test team said actually we have not finalized the other opening partner and have many options, the presence of Thirimanne, Nissnaka we have decided to best option for the India test match. The team composition also not finalized yet and we have three days more for the practices to decide best team to play this test match. However this test series is going to be Suranga Lakmal’s last series before his retirement. Actually under my leadership Lakmal gave excellent support for the team as a paceman and his departure going to be big loss for us. But at least I am happy that Lakmal has been selected for an England county team at this time it is any cricketers’ dream and I wish Lakmal for his future success. In the meantime our key off spinner Ramesh Mendis is not with us due to injury during this test series and it is a big loss for the team. Mendis played a vital role as an off spinner at the recent matches success and hope he will recover soon. Anyway young off spinner Ashian Daniel was named for the test squad and he has a good chance of making the team said Karunaratne.
Dimuth Karunaratne also said as an opener I have really done well during last year. I was able to score 902 runs in 7 test matches with an average of 69.38 and want to play with more confidence from the start of this year.I also have many goals to achieve in Test cricket and always work hard for that. However what is important is team success and never build up pressure as a leader and play my normal game, said Karunaratne.